Texas Unites wrap up – It was a Success!

Photo courtesy Judi Burnett

It’s been a long time since I’ve written and I apologize. I’ve been “wearing another hat” as Jim Tedford would say – coordinating the Texas Unites for Animals Conference in Austin.

Hosted by the Texas Animal Shelter Coalition and the Texas Federation of Humane Societies, and coordinated by yours truly, we brought together 377 animal care and sheltering professionals – rescuers, shelter staff, veterinarians, advocates, animal control officers, managers, directors, and so much more – from across the country (and Canada!).  42 of the best minds in the industry presented 49 workshops in six tracks – management, communication, operations, animals, adoptions, and veterinary care – plus the keynote session.  Attendees earned CEU credits from TSDHS, SAWA, TVMA, TBVME, LBVME, and more.

We filled the exhibit hall with 47 vendors including PetSmart Charities, Petfinder.com, Petco Foundation, ASPCA, TACA, THLN, TCAAP, Latham Foundation, Pet Point, Chameleon, Shelter Buddy, and many, many, more.  We served nearly 700 4-course lunches, breakfast, snacks, gallons upon gallons of coffee and tea, hundreds of appetizers and our signature drink, the “Irish Cowboy”.  And that doesn’t include the rather large quantity of alcoholic beverages consumed over the course of the event.

Keynote, photo courtesy Jonnie England

Attendees celebrated St. Patrick’s Day, played Bingo, networked, entered raffles and contests, won dozens of great prizes (including free conference registrations for 2013), and got some great Swag Bags with free stuff from our sponsors (lickety sticks, koozies, leashes, and more!).

Many local groups sent representatives including Dallas Animal Services, the SPCA of Texas, Paws In The City, Cat Matchers, Mazie’s Mission, Companions For Life, Animal Rescue of Texas, Animal Rescue Corps, Barn Cats, Arlington Animal Services, New Beginnings, Collin County Animal Services, 911 Wildlife, Metroplex Animal Coalition, Humane Society of North Texas, City of Dallas Animal Shelter Commission, Dog & Kitty City, Fort Worth Animal Care & Control, Irving Animal Services, Humane Society of Flower Mound, Richardson Animal Services, Feral Friends Communtiy Cat Alliance, and many more.

It took a team of dedicated organizers months of planning, the generosity of our amazing corporate sponsors, animal welfare professionals who donated their time and paid all their own costs to share their extensive knowledge, and an entire hotel staff dedicated to making our event a success, but we did it!  And apparently we did it well – the reviews are in and the conference was a smash hit!

Photo by Author

Missed it?  It’s never to early to make plans to attend Texas Unites for Animals 2013 March 16-18, 2013 at the Austin Renaissance Hotel in Austin.  While you do that,  I’ll get to work catching you up on everything that’s going on in DFW Animal Rescue and beyond!  As soon as I get just a little more sleep….

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Copyright Rebecca Poling 2011.  All rights reserved.  Email DFWAnimalRescue@att.net if you have a story you’d like to share.

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